While fans were waiting for Ariana Grande’s latest song, “Imagine,” her brother Frankie released a video of the siblings, along with some of their friends, singing “Seasons of Love” from the Broadway musical and hit movie, Rent. The video and recording are meant to promote Rent Live, airing on Fox in January 2019.
The music video was filmed while Ariana and Frankie were recording the song, which also features Frankie’s friends Ben, Jon-Erik, and Dominic. Their cover of the musical theater classic includes many of the harmonies fans associate with the original song. Frankie has a full-verse solo that showcases an impressive range and belt that many have not heard from him before. Ariana takes the solo at the end of the piece that is sung by the “Joanne” character in the musical and movie, which suits her powerhouse vocal ability and pays homage to her Broadway roots.
On December 11, Frankie took to Twitter to express his gratitude to his sister for the collaboration, writing “thank you for being my best friend, my rock, my little sister and my inspiration all at the same time. i am so honored to walk through this life next to you.”
i am brimming with gratitude tonight. mostly for my incredible sister. @ArianaGrande thank you for being my best friend, my rock, my little sister and my inspiration all at the same time. i am so honored to walk through this life next to you. i love you with all of my heart. ❤️
— Frankie James Grande (@FrankieJGrande) December 11, 2018
Once the video was released and fans began reacting to it on Twitter, Ariana returned the love for her brother, tweeting: “how beautiful does @FrankieJGrande sound ? i’m so proud of him and the year he’s had. the whole thing makes my heart so full. thankful i got to be a part of it. hope y’all enjoy.”
how beautiful does @frankiejgrande sound ? i'm so proud of him and the year he's had. the whole thing makes my heart so full. thankful i got to be a part of it. hope y'all enjoy. https://t.co/xU1UGXs3GV
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) December 13, 2018
This is not the first time either Grande has performed a musical theater number. Ariana Grande got her start in Broadway’s 13, and sang “The Wizard and I” from Wicked earlier this year, as part of the show’s 15th anniversary special. According to Playbill, Frankie was in the ensemble of Mamma Mia! in 2001, and took over the role of Franz in Rock of Ages in 2014 (after understudying for Drew).
In the description of the YouTube video, Frankie Grande explains that this is an advertisement in collaboration with the “#RentSingAlong,” leading up to the televised live event. He invites fans to submit their own version of “Seasons of Love,” following the instructions Fox has provided. On their webpage, Fox explains the purpose of the videos: “To spread the excitement about RENT coming to Fox, we’re launching a nationwide virtual sing-a-long choir. How does that work? Hundreds of fans record videos of themselves singing along to Seasons of Love. We compile the best performances into one gigantic choral RENT-stravaganza of talent.”
RENT Live will air on Fox on January 27, 2019; its cast is made up of stars from TV, music, and television, including Jordan Fisher, Vanessa Hudgens, Valentina, Tinashe, Brandon Victor Dixon, and Kiersey Clemons.